Wednesday, December 25, 2013

The 2013 SPLATTER! Awards

Confessions of a Film Junkie: The 2013 SPLATTER! Awards

By: Brian Cotnoir

     Well another year has come and gone.  I’d like to start off by thanking you, our loyal readers for checking us out each week and letting us know that a good number of you are interested in the films we review.  So as I reflect on all the crap that I’ve watched this year it’s time for me to hand out my “SPLATTER! Awards”.  Now last year, I just posted my 2012 Awards on Facebook (I did not do an official post on blogger), because I only had 4 awards/categories.  This year I’ve expanded my SPLATTER! Awards to seven, and I personally feel that is enough categories to release an official post.

     The Awards I am giving out are strictly my own opinion and will only be given out to films that I saw in 2013.  There’s a very good chance that I did not see some films in 2013 that may be considered the Best/Worst.  So please do not comment saying “oh, what are you talking about, this film was way worst than that” etc.  My official cutoff date for films was Thanksgiving, so if I didn’t include it on my list it is most likely because I didn’t see it.  All Films marked with an asterisk (*) are brand new categories, hence the films I give them to will be the first recipients of the award.

BEST FILM OF THE YEAR (The Best Film I watched released in 2013)
Last year was a fantastic year for new films, but 2013 was—in my opinion—a “meh” year for film.  I just don’t think there was as many good films released this year as there were in 2012 or 2011.  Then again, I didn’t see many films that people said were great like “The Worlds End”, “The Butler”, “12 Years A Slave”, “Oz The Great and Powerful”, “The Hunger Games: Catching Fire” and others.  So my choice for the Best Film of 2013 goes to “Insidious: Chapter 2”.  I’m sure many of you right now are telling me that I am wrong.  I’m sure some of you would say that “The Conjuring” was better than “Insidious: Chapter 2”.  I respectfully disagree.  The reason why I’m giving “Insidious: Chapter 2” the SPLATTER! Award for Best film of 2013 is because it had some interesting twists to the original story.  We’ve seen the story to “The Conjuring” done so many times before, but “Insidious: Chapter 2” was different.  It had twists, it had thrills, and it didn’t have a single plot hole.  Any questions you may have had for the first film are answered in the second film.  I will say, that I didn’t think the second film wasn’t as good as the original, but I still found it to be a rather enjoyable film to watch, and was glad to see so many of the characters we enjoyed in the original appear in this sequel.  This is why I have selected “Insidious: Chapter 2” as my recipient of the 2013 SPLATTER! Award for Best Film of the Year.  Here’s hoping for much better films in 2014.

WORST FILM OF THE YEAR (The Worst Film I watched released in 2013)

Wow.  Looking back at this year I watched so much crap!  I thought I saw some crap in 2012, well this year I saw so much crap I didn’t even have time to write reviews for some of the films I watched this year.  Last Year, I gave this award to “Girls Gone Dead” (which also won my “Worst Film that I saw for the first time this year” award), and I thought to myself that no film made or released in 2013 could come close to be that bad.  Well, I was wrong.  The SPLATTER! Award for Worst Film of the Year goes to “House of Bodies”, and just to help put in perspective how bad of a film it is:  this means that I thought films like “Paranormal Asylum”, “Hansel and Gretel” (w/ Dee Wallace)**, “A Haunting in Silver Falls”, “Darkroom”, “Sharknado”**, “The Purge”, “Movie 43”**, and “Evil Dead” (w/Shiloh Fernandez)** were all better than “House of Bodies”.  Why do I consider this film so much worst then the others is because this film had not one, but two Oscar nominated actors in the film, and they were terrible.  I can excuse “Paranormal Asylum” for being bad because it’s just trying to rip off “Paranormal Activity”.  I can excuse “Evil Dead” for being bad, because it was a crappy remake of a much beloved Horror film.  And I can even excuse “Sharknado” for being bad, because it was produced by SyFy and we all knew we were getting a pile of crap before we even watched it, but “House of Bodies” has no excuse.  It had terrible a story, no shock or entertainment, and did not let its actors live up to their full potential.  Hell, even “Movie 43”, another film that Terrance Howard appeared in, was more enjoyable then “House of Bodies”.  All of the reasons are more than enough to justify why I am naming “House of Bodies”, the Worst Film of the Year.

**=I saw the film in 2013, but did not write or post a review on it.

BIGGEST SURPRISE OF THE YEAR* (Released in year 2013)

This year’s SPLATTER! Award for Biggest Surprise of the Year goes to “Self Storage”, a film made and produced in Rhode Island by the Woodhaven Production Company.  This is the fourth film that the Woodhaven Production Company has released since 2010.  Although they are still a small company the Woodhaven Production Company has managed to show that they have potential, and “Self Storage” is their best example.  The film was written, directed, and stars Tom DeNucci.  He is joined in this film by the acting talents of Eric Roberts and Horror Movie Acting legend Michael Berryman.  If you have not seen “Self Storage” yet, you simply must.  It is a low-budget film, but it’s better than a lot of films I’ve seen this year that were made with much larger budgets.  

BIGGEST DISSAPOINTMENT OF THE YEAR* (A film I had high expectations for, but was completely disappointed by released in 2013)

"The Most Terrifying Film" my a$$!
I’ll be honest with all of you; this was probably my toughest decision I had to make this year.  I was disappointed with both Marvel Superhero sequels—“Iron Man 3” and “Thor: The Darkworld”—but I know a lot of people liked them, they did well at the box office, and they were sequels, so I felt it would be unfair of me to judge them as sequel films, but want to know even worse than most movie sequels?; movie remakes!  So yeah, I hate remakes of films so when I heard that they were making a remake of “The Evil Dead” I said that I was not going to go and see it.  Well the marketing for this film and the trailers made it look totally awesome, and they got me.  So I spent my $10.50 on the movie ticket and was excited, and after watching it I thought to myself that I should have stuck to my gut instincts.   Man, did this film piss me off.  They absolutely butchered this film.  The new plot was awful, and I hated all the characters.  Especially, actor Shiloh Fernandez.  Why does he have to be in so many awful films?  What “Deadgirl” wasn’t bad enough, he had to go and tarnish the legacy of one of the most beloved horror films of a generation.  What makes it even worse is that this film actually had the blessing of Sam Raimi and Bruce Campbell (the director and star of the original “Evil Dead”).  Besides desecrating their own works, actress Jane Levy, who played Mia in the film, said the film was a miserable experience and that she would never want to appear in another horror film.  So, yeah when your own cast doesn’t like the film it might be a sign that your film is a pile of crap.

THE WHAT THE F*CK FILM OF THE YEAR* (The film released in 2013 that made me proclaim to myself “What the F*ck?”)

How did you make so much money???
So the recipient of the first ever “SPLATTER! Award” for the “What the F*ck Film of the Year” has to go to “The Purge”.  This film had one interesting plot piece and it was what would happen if crime was made temporarily legal once a year; more specifically what if murder was legal.  I mean, why do they just focus on murder?  Are you trying to tell me that if the government allowed its people to commit whatever crimes they wanted, they’d all choose murder.  I find that hard to believe that all everyone would want to do is murder.  Seriously, no arson, no sex crimes, no vandalism, or looting?  If that wasn’t weak enough, the film also had a ton of plot holes.  Why are the bad guys so bent on getting one homeless person?  Why does the family decide to hide him?  How does their home security system fail so easily?  Not to mention everything in this film was the sons fault!   The reason why it is the recipient of this award is because despite all of its flaws it actually made money!  Not only that, but it made enough money to garner a sequel...What the F*ck?!  How did this film manage to pull that off???  Well it goes without saying “The Purge” is more than deserving of this award.

BEST FILM THAT I SAW FOR THE FIRST TIME THIS YEAR (This Award Goes to any film that I saw for the first time this year no matter what year it was released)

This year’s SPLATTER! Award for “Best Film that I saw for the First Time This Year” is a tie.  Both films are a part of the same franchise.  The winners are “Grave Encounters” and “Grave Encounters 2”.  What enticed me to check out these two films was the cover to the second film.  It looked very interesting and since I wanted to see the second one, I knew I had to see the first one.  “Grave Encounters” is following the recent trend of Paranormal Investigative Mock-umentary style horror films (similar to “Paranormal Activity”).  I actually think “Grave Encounters” is the best one I’ve seen so far.  The way I’d describe both films is like this.  What the first one lacks in scares, it makes up in story, and what the second one lacks in story, it makes up in scares.                        
The second film actually has a distinguished honor of being one of the few horror films I’ve watched where I screamed out in terror.  So like I said, the DVD cover to the second one made me want to see it.  That weird looking creature peaked my interest, and when it broke through the window in the film, I remember jumping up in my bed and shouting “Ahh!  Ahh!  What the hell is that?!  What the HELL is that?!”...I think it’s kind of pathetic, that I saw the monster before the film and it still managed to scare the crap out of me as I watched it.  Both of these films are fantastic, and if you have not seen either “Grave Encounters” or its sequel, I highly recommend that you go and do that now.

WORST FILM THAT I SAW FOR THE FIRST TIME THIS YEAR (This Award Goes to any film that I saw for the first time this year no matter what year it was released)

     “Birdemic: Shock and Terror” I even need to explain why this film is so awful?  It was my most popular audience request this year, it was the first time I had ever seen the film (though I had heard many negative things about it before I saw it), and yeah it’s awful...Don’t see it.

So Awful

Confessions of a Film Junkie: A review of "Birdemic: Shock and Terror"

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